Why do people behave badly in management team meetings?
The same manager who is charming and agreeable to partner agencies is abrasive , argumentative and opinionated to colleagues in team meetings.
In business you don’t go around having massive confrontations. You try and find the things you agree on rather than what you disagree on. The common ground. So your not challenging the language and values your trying to get on, improve cooperation or do a deal. Establishing partnerships and making them work.
It’s surprising then that so much time and energy is often taken up by skirmishes with colleagues, those who in theory are on your side. How much time is wasted in team meetings as two managers butt heads over some minor shift in tactics. Why does a certain member of the team have to be so difficult, obstructive and negative. You know those involved don’t care that passionately about he issue. But neither seems prepared to let the other, “ win”.
So this is the difference in one scenario you let things go, an inappropriate aside, a smutty comment, an unfair criticism, a derogatory remark even a some what disparaging reference to a past event. All of course delivered with and responded to with a smile. If they want to score points against you and yours so be it your eyes are on the bigger prize.
In the second scenario this person shares your values and beliefs. Your goals and priorities are the same, almost, same top five slight difference in the order. But your determined not to let anything go unchallenged. You don’t see why everyone should give in to them just because they make a fuss. You could agree to disagree but that’s the point you disagree. You know you’re not going to change their mind just as your determined they won’t change yours, so your appealing to the common sense of the rest of the group. Thing is even if the majority do side with you in an attempt to move on, your foe will carry on as if the ,’dissuasion’ never took place and certainly no decision was ever reached.
To my mind this is why management team meetings should be frequent but short because if you’ve got all morning that’s how long the , “debate” will go on.
Blair McPherson former director author and blogger www.blairmcpherson.co.uk